Defeat Diabetes: 1/3 of Americans Have Pre-Diabetes Syndrome
1/3 of Americans Have Pre-Diabetes Syndrome
than 60 million Americans that could become diabetic
As many as one
in three Americans has a condition called insulin resistance syndrome, putting
them at high risk of diabetes and heart disease, a panel of doctors said on
But diet and exercise can take care of the condition in many, if not most,
cases, and a few simple tests can tell doctors and patients who is at most risk,
the experts said.
In insulin resistance syndrome, also known as metabolic syndrome or syndrome X,
a person loses his or her ability to manage insulin effectively. More and more
people--children as well as adults--are developing the condition as the
population eats more and exercises less.
Left untreated, the syndrome can develop into diabetes as well as heart disease,
nonalcoholic fatty liver and perhaps some cancers, including colon and ovarian
On Tuesday a committee of experts from four top medical organizations--the
American College of Endocrinology, American Association of Clinical
Endocrinologists ( news - web sites), American Medical Association and the
American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine--issued
official guidance on how to diagnose the condition.
"As the prevalence of insulin resistance syndrome has skyrocketed 61% in the
last decade, it is crucial that medical professionals have consistent and
definitive criteria to assess this serious condition," Dr. Daniel Einhorn of the
Scripps Whittier Institute for Diabetes in La Jolla, California, and co-chair of
the panel, told a news conference.
"We feel that as many as one in three Americans have this," Einhorn added in an
Einhorn said pediatricians report that 7- to 10-year-old children are developing
metabolic syndrome, obesity and type 2 diabetes--once seen only in adults.
"We never saw this before," Einhorn said. "Pediatricians are having to learn
about adult medications."
No single test can identify insulin resistance syndrome, but measurements of
weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose tolerance can. One quick check
that people can do at home is waist circumference, the experts said--men with
40-inch waists and women with 35-inch waists are at higher risk.
Details are available on the Internet at http://www.aace.com.
Other indications a person may have insulin resistance syndrome are polycystic
ovary syndrome, which Einhorn believes may affect up to one in 10 women. The
condition is marked by infertility, excess facial hair and obesity.
In addition, there is a skin condition, acanthosis nigricans, linked with the
What can patients do if diagnosed with insulin resistance?
"It doesn't require draconian measures," Einhorn said. Losing 5% to 10% of total
body weight will help a good deal--and studies show that as little as 20 minutes
of extra exercise such as brisk walking, 5 days a week, can help most people
lose that much weight.
It is not necessary to cut out all sweets, he added. And like many doctors,
Einhorn does not believe claims that carbohydrates are to blame for obesity.
"It is not any one thing that's the culprit," Einhorn said. "It's not just the
fast food. It's not just the pastries. It's a combination of genetics and the
diseases of modern living--obesity and sedentary living."
Source: Diabetes In Control Dot Com.
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